Other Side Drive October 12, 2012

todayOctober 17, 2012 14

share close

By Sarah Vasquez
Segment Producer

  • play_arrow

    Other Side Drive October 12, 2012

October 12, 2012

On the Other Hand

Descendants of Erdrick is an Austin-based band that performs songs from video games. Avid gamers might focus more on the actual playing, but the music is still part of the experience. The band came together with Amanda Lepre and Chris Taylor after they first met at a show their bands played on a Fourth of July years ago. Taylor, the bassist, says their first conversation was about video games, more specifically “Final Fantasy: Mystic Quest.” “Don’t ever think this is not a band of nerds because we’re a band of nerds. This is why we do what we do.” That was Lepre who plays guitar. A year later, they formed a band. It wasn’t until 2009, a year after, when the rest of the band joined and they turn into what Taylor calls a “real band.” Lepre said they found the members through Craigslist.“Basically, hey does anybody want to join a video game music band and only three people responded. And these are the three people.”

Those three people, drummer John Pike, guitarist Mike Villalobos, and flute player Lauren Liebowitz, say they had all fallen out of music before they join Descendants of Erdrick. Pike says when he was looking to join a band again, he didn’t really click with anyone. He says he grew up with a controller in his hand and played games like Zelda and Super Mario Brothers and was surprised when he came across Taylor and Lepre’s ad. “And I was like oh my God, I’ve never even… I never even thought of something like this. That sounds so awesome.” Villalobos, who also goes by the nickname Lobos, says he actually learned how to play video game music before he joined the band.

As for Leibowitz, she says she missed music, and when she saw the ad, she thought the flute was probably useless to the band but thought it was the coolest thing ever. Lepre was the one who thought they should try it so Leibowitz joined. “So it was kinda exciting cause I’ve never played in a rock band. They never played rock with a flute so…” With the different types of video game systems out there. Pike says everyone seems to have their own criteria and are open to suggestions. “Basically, you name it and it’s like something that we want to cover or something that fans want to hear us play.” But Lepre says it started with a backorder of songs she wanted to learn. “Oh, I’ve always wanted to do the song from Megaman 3 or oh, I’ve always wanted to do Final Fantasy Mystic Quest. It’s like those are first, you know.”

She also says that a huge thing with song selection is the transition from video game to electric guitar. Taylor says they’ve been told they are purists. “Cause we play it as literally as possible, like as close to the old 8-bit version but just on guitars.” They usually play in order and start with a title screen or an intro. Lepre says the order is for those that play the game. “It’s trying to be most coherent to the listener, but sometimes it just works out that it’s also the order of how you play the game in certain situations.”

Leibowitz says the music really resonates with people. During a show at Zilker Park, the band was playing the Final Fantasy victory at the end and she saw a guy is running across the field doing a fist pump. He told them he heard Punch Out while he was wandering through Botanical Gardens and followed the sound. Lepre says they will let people down if they don’t play Super Mario Brothers, but it really depends on the audience. Leibowitz says she can always tell who’s never been to one of their shows before until Villalobos plays the coin sound effects with his guitar. “Yeah, everyone’s like whoa.” Lepre remembers the band’s first show at Elysium and had a similar response. “I remember being up there like oh my gosh, I’m blown away. We’re playing Mystic Quest. I’m on stage and I’m hearing a harmony guitar part. I had never heard this before. Blown away by it the very first time.” Leibowitz says she missed her entrance in Mystic Quest at that show because she was so excited to play. When she was a kid, she grew up on classical music, but then she played that game.

“The soundtrack is all like super metal guitar and so like young and impressionable Lauren, is like this is coolest thing ever, so now I’m like on stage like playing like this super metal awesome Mystic Quest music with like real electric guitars, so you can say it’s like a childhood dream come true.”

Descendents of Edick just announced their upcoming show on October 26 at Game Over Videogames in Austin. The band announced in August on Facebook, though, that the current members will be parting ways as of January 2013. Lepre also said on Facebook that they are working on an album that will be released for free on Bandcamp, and she will continue the band.


Written by:

Rate it

Post comments (0)

Leave a Reply

top Tracks

Team Members


  • Chart track


    Just The Once [Single]


  • Chart track


    The Window

    Rat Boys

  • Chart track


    It's Time [Single]

    Truth Club

  • Chart track




  • Chart track


    What's Your Motive

    The Hails

Full tracklist

%d bloggers like this: